Category: History –  Page 4

You won’t believe this one weird trick they used to fly beer to the D-Day troops in Normandy

Today, I have a long and very interesting article for you which was originally published on the amazing Zythophile blog by Martyn Cornell. Martyn Cornell is an author, journalist and beer historian. Enjoy! Normandy, 70 years ago, and one of the biggest concerns of the British troops who have made it over the channel, survived…

Read more… 12 Jun 15

The teenager who flew to Moscow

28 years ago, on the 28th May 1987, a 19-year old German flew a Cessna 172 to Moscow, taxi-ing straight into the Red Square. At the time, the airspace around the Soviet Union was closed and fiercely protected. Just four years earlier, Korean Air Lines flight 007 was shot down by a Soviet Su-15 interceptor.…

Read more… 29 May 15

Cal Rodgers and the first fatal birdstrike

Bird strikes are loosely defined as a collision between an airborne animal and a human-made vehicle. The animal in question is usually a bird but can also be a bat (and in one bizarre incident, a fish). Annual damages caused by bird strikes are estimated at US$1.2 billion for commercial aircraft worldwide. Initial aviators had…

Read more… 22 May 15

The Mystery of Pan Am flight 7

Pan Am trip number 7 was an around-the-world flight which disappeared at sea, never to be recovered or understood. The aircraft was Pan Am ship #944 (registration N90944), a Boeing 377 Stratocruiser Romance of the Skies. The Stratocruiser was “the ocean liner of the air” with Pullman-style sleeping berths, reclining seats with 60 inches of…

Read more… 13 Mar 15

The Story of Diamond Jack Palmer and the Pelikaan

The story of Diamond Jack Palmer is a typically Australian story of a beach comber whose luck was in when he found diamonds worth a few million on the beach but couldn’t quite keep up with his luck. It’s also a fascinating aviation story. It starts with the Koninklijke Nederlandsch-Indische Luchtvaart Maatschappij airline and their…

Read more… 21 Nov 14

Landing in a Corn Field

I’ve been browsing old photographs again, and found an amazing pair of a Lockheed Constellation from 1951. The Lockheed Constellation, affectionately known as the “Connie” is an easy aircraft to recognise. The propeller-driven aircraft with four 18-cylinder engines was described by Popular Mechanics Magazine in 1943 as resembling a great winged shark: Popular Mechanics ,…

Read more… 20 Jun 14

Accident Reports

Stall and Fatal Crash at Houston Hobby

On the 9th of June 2016, a Cirrus SR20, registration N4252G crashed during a go-around at William P. Hobby airport, killing the pilot and two passengers. I first heard of…

What happened on Ethiopian flight 302: a breakdown of the preliminary report

Yesterday, the 4th of April, the Ethiopian Accident Investigation Bureau investigating the crash of Ethiopian Airlines flight 302 released the Preliminary Report (local version stored at bottom of this post).…

Demystifying

What Is Going On With The Boeing 737 Max 8?

The news is dominated right now with the grounding of the Boeing 737 Max 8 after a second fatal crash of a passenger jet which could be related to the…

Thirty Years Since Air France Flight 296

Thirty years ago, on the 26th of June 1988, a brand new Airbus A320 crashed during a demonstration of its fly-by-wire capabilities, killing three passengers and demolishing the plane as…

History

Building a B-29 Piece by Piece

I’m in Austria this week, giving a presentation about the representation of old women in science fiction. So it seemed only right to celebrate a woman in aviation who might…

The Odd Story of Richard Floyd McCoy Jr

I’ve been working hard on volume two of Without a Trace and, of course, I can’t resist a chapter on Dan Cooper, who successfully hijacked a Northwest Orient aircraft and…

Fun Stuff

2019 Valdez Fly In and STOL Competition

Every May in Valdez, Alaska there is a fantastic aviation competition which requires astounding performance and precision from both from the aircraft and from the pilot. The Valdez STOL competition…

For your amusement: weird and interesting NOTAMS

I was browsing around looking for interesting news when I saw that Reddit user justachamelion had posted a great question for /r/AskReddit: Pilots of Reddit, what are the weirdest or…